After three years of intensive research and development And Ending hatchery technology company Pas Reform will introduce Circadian Incubation ™, its latest advancement for modular, single-stage incubation, at VIV Europe this year.
The ultimate goal of the modern hatcheries is to produce uniform, robust day old chicks. Robustness is, explains Dr. Marleen Boerjan, director of R & D at Pas Reform Academy, a health criterion that originates in the embryo and directly correlates with the performance and resistance of individual chicks under different farm conditions.
"Circadian Incubation ™ is based on observations that embryonic 'training' - or the imprinting of body functions - stimulates robustness on the farm," she says. "This" imprinting "is achieved by exposing the embryos to environmental triggers during the maturation phase of incubation - and has been shown to cause long-lasting alterations in the programming of body functions."
Study shows that embryos exposed to short periods of heat or cold develop an improved capacity to control body temperature during periods of heat or cold in the farm. Short-term conditioning, using Circadian ™ Incubation, hatching improves and produces positive results, long-lasting effects on body weight and feed conversion. Uniform, robust day old chicks improve uniformity at slaughter age, thereby improving efficiency and performance throughout the entire production chain.
Circadian Incubation ™ greatly challenges the incubator's homogeneity. Pas Reform's New Product Development program has delivered a new design concept that maximizes homogeneous temperature distribution. CEO Bart Aangenendt concludes: "Three years of intensive (flow) simulations and empirical field studies have shown that the combination of  a modular incubator design,  a new airflow principle based on the creation of vortices and  adaptive feedback control, produces the precise environmental controls required to successfully apply thermal stimulation during incubation.
"We have called the combined use of these three features 'SmartPro ™': an innovative, accurate new incubator temperature that maximises homogeneity directly in accordance with the time-varying needs of the growing embryo at each stage of the incubation process."
To see Pas Reform's new SmartPro ™ incubator, which will be unveiled for the first time at VIV Europe 2010, visit stand C050/51.